Apple’s meteoric rise has again been validated with the news that its 10 billionth app was downloaded by someone in the U.K. Gail Davis of Orpington, Kent, U.K. downloaded Paper Glider, and won a $10K Apple iTunes gift card for the feat.
Apple reports that over 160 million iOS devices, which includes the iPhone, iPod, and iPad are now in circulation, and growing every day. Apple’s App store now offers more than 350,000 apps to users in 90 countries. The iPad has 60K native apps. It’s a remarkable marketplace that Apple has built, helping to contribute to their $6 billion in net income for the fourth quarter 2010 alone.
Apple’s influence has spawned whole new product categories, like the tablet computer and the app store, with significant implications for broadband carriers. The app segment has been dominated by wireless devices, but its influence is now crossing over to the home and to wired broadband networks. It’s redefining the concept of software. The connected home concept is very much influenced by the momentum of apps.
Apple’s moves are also impacting the important concept of ‘experience.’ They are literally transforming the expectations of customers, who now expect a cool, yet simple experience for their mobile and broadband escapades. Indeed, service providers should take notice of the ‘Apple’ effect and be prepared to meet the new level of ‘experience’ expectation their customers increasingly will demand.